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    Rights statement: This is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Communications in Nonlinear Science and Numerical Simulation. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Communications in Nonlinear Science and Numerical Simulation, 105, 2022 DOI: 10.1016/j.cnsns.2021.106076

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Nonlinear growth and mathematical modelling of COVID-19 in some African countries with the Atangana-Baleanu fractional derivative

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

Article number106076
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>28/02/2022
<mark>Journal</mark>Communications in Nonlinear Science and Numerical Simulation
Number of pages27
Publication StatusPublished
Early online date28/10/21
<mark>Original language</mark>English


We analyse the time-series evolution of the cumulative number of confirmed cases of COVID-19, the novel coronavirus disease, for some African countries. We propose a mathematical model, incorporating non-pharmaceutical interventions to unravel the disease transmission dynamics. Analysis of the stability of the model’s steady states was carried out, and the reproduction number R0, a vital key for flattening the time-evolution of COVID-19 cases, was obtained by means of the next generation matrix technique. By dividing the time evolution of the pandemic for the cumulative number of confirmed infected cases into different regimes or intervals, hereafter referred to as phases, numerical simulations were performed to fit the proposed model to the cumulative number of confirmed infections for different phases of COVID-19 during its first wave. The estimated R0 declined from 2.452 – 9.179 during the first phase of the infection to 1.374 – 2.417 in the last phase. Using the Atangana-Baleanu fractional derivative, a fractional COVID-19 model is proposed and numerical simulations performed to establish the dependence of the disease dynamics on the order of the fractional derivatives. An elasticity and sensitivity analysis of R0 was carried out to determine the most significant parameters for combating the disease outbreak. These were found to be the effective disease transmission rate, the disease diagnosis or case detection rate, the proportion of susceptible individuals taking precautions, and the disease infection rate. Our results show that if the disease infection rate is less than 0.082/day, then R0 is always less than 1; and if at least 55.29% of the susceptible population take precautions such as regular hand washing with soap, use of sanitizers, and the wearing of face masks, then the reproduction number R0 remains below unity irrespective of the disease infection rate. Keeping R0 values below unity leads to a decrease in COVID-19 prevalence.